Text of a letter which appeared in the Welwyn and Hatfield Times.
This year marks the centenary of the Territorial Army. TA soldiers are the hidden heroes in our community. Dedicated and professional, they balance their civilian lives with a regular commitment to training and, when called upon, serve alongside their colleagues in the regular army. Winston Churchill referred to them as being 'twice a citizen' - squeezing two jobs, two lives into the space in which others barely have time for one.
During this centenary year the Welwyn and Hatfield division of the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association (SSAFA) would like to thank the men and women of Hatfield, WGC and the surrounding area who unflinchingly dedicate themselves to their TA duties.
With the ongoing pressures on all our armed forces, TA and reserve members have been mobilised in numbers unprecedented in recent history. These reserve forces leave their civilian lives and families at home while they are deployed in the battle-zones of Iraq or Afghanistan with all the accompanied hardships and dangers. While they are away, families undergo the stress of having a loved one on the frontline but without all the support of the established military community. Having experienced situations that may be unimaginable to many of us, they return and occasionally find it difficult to settle back in to a civilian life.
To mark the centenary of the Territorial Army, there will be a parade of TA, Old Comrades Association and army cadet force members, in Hertford on July 27. It will start from the TA Centre, St Andrew's Street, Hertford, at 9.50am, and will end at All Saints Church for a service between 10.15 and 11.15am. The parade will then march back to the TA Centre for a presentation and buffet lunch at midday. On parade will be 13 Platoon of the Royal Anglian Regiment, Infantry, and the Medical Support Unit, Evacuation Squadron of 254 Medical Regiment.
Signed: Robert Woods, SSAFA Forces Help, divisional secretary
Says it all.